Military Writers Society of America Helps Veterans Write

The Military Writers Society of America (MWSA) will hold a free writing workshop Thur., Sept. 12, 2019, at the Raymond G. Murphy Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Seasoned writers will present on the topics of storytelling, character, conflict, dialogue, memoir, short story, non-fiction, and editing.

MWSA published authors have conducted veteran-focused workshops over the past five years at VA medical and veteran centers in Phoenix; Waco, Texas; San Antonio; and Charleston, S.C. The goal of the writing workshops has been to help veterans and their families share their stories through a positive writing workshop venue at no cost to attendees.

Jim Tritten, an Albuquerque writer and MWSA board member, will present ideas on how to write short stories. A Navy veteran patient who participates in the medical center’s creative writing program, Tritten has twice won Gold Medals for 1st Place in the annual National Veterans Creative Arts Festival. Tritten said, “Writing short stories has been a natural path to follow as I process my PTSD symptoms and the road to recovery.”

MWSA’s Director of Education Jack W. London started the program in 2014. London, a multiple award-winning author and Army veteran, said, “Writers helping writers. Veterans helping veterans. These workshops focus on the things that all of us need help with – organizing the non-fiction and fiction, story, characters and dialogue, memoir – the things we want to write.”

London continued, “Our faculty have all won awards for their writing, and we do not charge for our workshops. Our reward is the best reward of all: the satisfaction from giving back with our talents to help you with yours.”

The workshops aim to achieve one of MWSA’s organizational purposes “to reach out to reach out to schools, military organizations, and veterans’ groups  and encourage an interest in writing….” In addition to MWSA volunteers London and Tritten, the faculty will include Valerie Ormond, Robin Hutton, Dane Zeller, Jacqueline Loring, Nancy Arbuthnot and Joseph Badal.

Any veteran being treated at any VA hospital or clinic is welcome to attend. In addition, anyone registered for the Joint MWSA/SouthWest Writers (SWW) Conference held Friday, Sept. 13 – Sun., Sept. 14, in Albuquerque may attend. Event organizers request attendees register so they may prepare a sufficient number of books, worksheets, and other handouts. To register for the VA Writing Workshop, please see https://www.facebook.com/events/1247577138714012/.

For additional information about the Military Writers Society of America or the Joint MWSA/SWW Conference, please see http://www.mwsadispatches.com/.

 

About the Military Writers Society of America

The Military Writers Society of America (MWSA) exists to help military service members, veterans, their families, supporters, and historians record history and the complexities of military life, and to encourage writing as therapy. The501(c)3 non-profit organization focuses on using the writing of MWSA members to educate the general public, students, and the military community. Learn more at http://www.mwsadispatches.com/.

About the Raymond G. Murphy VA Medical Center

The Raymond G. Murphy VA Medical Center is part of the New Mexico VA Health Care System and is located at 1501 San Pedro SE, Albuquerque, NM 87108. The Medical Center can be reached via telephone at (505)265-1711 or (800)465-8262. For more information on the VA Writing Workshop, please see https://www.facebook.com/events/1247577138714012/.

Believing In Horses, Too Wins Again!

“A great read. Filled with inspiration and drive.” —Stroud Arts Book Festival”

Believing In Horses, Too won the Best Young Adult Fiction book and Literary Excellence Award in the 2018 Stroud Arts Book Festival awards. This win follows previous awards including a Gold Medal from the Military Writers Society of America and 1st Place in Young Adult Fiction in The Authors’ Zone book awards.

Book festival Executive Director Guy Lozier said, “You have achieved A Gold Award for your efforts. The judges were impressed with your solid literary achievement.” [Read more…]

Creating and Managing Successful Internships

Maryland Horse Council Intern Holden Rafey interviewing Olympian Joe Fargis (photo courtesy of Holden Rafey)

I landed my first professional job at WJZ-TV in Baltimore, Md., after serving as an intern while a student at Towson University. At 21-years-old, I became the station’s assistant Public Relations Officer with real duties and responsibilities and had the opportunity to work with industry icons like Oprah Winfrey. I owe that job and experience to my supervisor during my internship, Joyce Kashima. [Read more…]

Guest Post – Days End Farm Horse Rescue

Please welcome Maryland Horse Council (MHC) Youth Correspondent, Holden Rafey, and her guest post on Days End Farm Horse Rescue (DEFHR). Days End is featured in Believing In Horses, Too, and I’ve been fortunate to get to know some of the great staff and volunteers there over the past few years. I’ve also been honored to serve as Holden’s mentor in her MHC internship for almost two years now and share with you her 19th post to the MHC’s Youth Blog discussing this tremendous organization.

Days End Farm Horse Rescue

By Holden Rafey

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Time off from school can be time spent with horses, though riding is only one of the ways to get your horse fix. Did you know you can learn about rescue horses and help with their care in spring break and summer programs? [Read more…]

Brave HEART – Horses Helping Military

BraveHEART_CoverI recently had the opportunity to work with the Brave HEART program on several writing projects. Brave HEART (Heroes Equine Adventure & Riding Therapy) “provides an environment where Veterans, military members, and their families come together to facilitate healing and strengthen relationships through equine interaction and outdoor activities.” A 501(c)(3) charitable organization, the Brave HEART program supports those who have served, or still serve, at the peaceful Larkspur Lane Farm setting in Hagerstown, Maryland.

While speaking with the founder and Executive Director, Laura Lane-Unsworth, we determined one of the Brave HEART projects would be a tri-fold brochure to help inform people about Brave HEART’s work. Laura was most helpful in getting me the top five points to get across, testimonials, and a general feel for the tone of the brochure. I put together the words and then enlisted the help of my talented graphic designer friend, Brittany Klein of Radiant Resolution, LLC, to display the information in a far more pleasing manner than I could. I am not a graphic designer – at all – and know the value good graphic designers bring to any visual project. [Read more…]

Maryland is for Horses

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The Maryland state slogan should be “Maryland is for Horses;” it makes much more sense than “Virginia is for Lovers.” It’s not just the history, the legacy, and the facilities, but our fellow citizens’ support. Although I’ve been involved with horses since my first riding lessons at Kettering Stables in the 1960’s and grew up watching horses run at Bowie Race Track, I did not understand the far reaching impact horses had on communities, businesses, individuals, and industries until recently. I’m not an economist, but I can use my own personal example to illustrate how one person’s horse habit can affect the local economy. [Read more…]